Don Scott (Ontario author)

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Don Scott (May 19, 1924 – December 6, 2011[1]) is a retired school teacher, writer and sometime political candidate based in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada.[2] He is a graduate of the University of Toronto, holds a Master of Science degree from Guelph University, and is self-educated in the field of degenerative diseases.[3] Scott has been a candidate for both the New Democratic Party and the Canadian Action Party, and formed a short-lived party called Ontario Options in mid-1990s.

Early life and career[edit]

Scott was born in Wiarton, Ontario. He joined the Royal Canadian Navy on July 15, 1941 and served in the Pacific and North Atlantic during World War II, including a stint on the HMCS Ontario. He wrote a guest piece on his experiences for the Toronto Star newspaper in 1997, and has written similar pieces for the Sudbury Star.[4] In 1948, he was discharged with the rank of Petty Officer.[5]

He worked as a teacher after leaving the military, and was a commissioner of the Ontario Teachers' Pension Fund from 1971 to 1976. He criticized the Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation's retirement scheme in 1979, arguing that senior staff members were receiving "immoral" increases via dubious means.[6] In 1984, he promoted a series of retirement villages for teachers throughout Ontario.[7]

Medical work[edit]

In 1995, Scott assisted a Sudbury woman in her successful battle to have chronic fatigue syndrome officially recognized as a debilitating disease.[8] He developed a personal interest in the subject, and conducted private research on degenerative diseases from 1995 to 1999. In 1995, he and his son William wrote a book entitled The Extremely Unfortunate Skull Valley Incident, examining an American test of nerve gas in the Skull Valley area that caused the death of thousands of sheep. The Scotts wrote a follow-up book called The Brucellosis Triangle in 1997, hypothesizing a link between CFS and brucella bacteria.[9] Scott has frequently argued that CFS and related conditions should be recognized as legitimate illnesses, and rejects the view that they are "learned behaviour designed to help the patient avoid facing life".[10]

Scott founded the Common Cause Medical Research Foundation in 1998, seeking to draw together researchers working in the field of degenerative diseases. In July 1999, he introduced a quarterly publication called The Journal of Degenerative Diseases. The journal was published by the Sudbury Star, and edited by Scott himself.[11] He launched another new publication in 2003, with the title able.[12]

Scott has hypothesized that mycoplasma (crystalline elements of dead bacteria cells) may remain dormant in human bodies and become reinvigorated as the result of traumatic events, thereby robbing other cells of ammonia. This process, he has argued, is the cause of many degenerative disorders. Dr. Garth Nicolson of the Institute of Molecular Medicine in California has described Scott's research as "mind-boggling", and convinced him to become an adjunct professor at the institution.[13] Scott's writings are also very critical of the American military establishment and its biological warfare experiments, which he blames for the spread of many diseases.[14] In 2004 and 2005, he focused his attention on Alzheimer's Disease and proposed a clinical trial to reverse some effects of the illness.[15]

In a 2001 interview with the Sudbury Star, Scott said that he was able to bring forward unconventional medical theories because he was self-taught, and "not predisposed to think in a way that someone taught me to think". This piece also described his writings as "thorough and highly engaging."[16]


Scott entered political life as a member of the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation (CCF), and ran for the party in the 1953 federal election.[17] He finished third against Liberal incumbent Jack Smith in the riding of York North.

The CCF was restructured as the New Democratic Party in 1960-61. Scott remained active with the new party, and ran under its banner in the 1967 provincial election and the 1974 federal election. He finished second on both occasions, the first time to Progressive Conservative Gaston Demers in Nickel Belt, and the second time to Liberal Jim Jerome in Sudbury.

He became disillusioned with the NDP during the government of Bob Rae (1990–95), and started his own political party called Ontario Options in June 1994. According to a Montreal Gazette report, the party proposed that Canada be divided into five countries: Quebec, Ontario, Atlantic and Prairie federations, and a federation of British Columbia with the northern territories. Scott was the party's only member at the time of its national registration, and ran under its banner in the 1995 provincial election. As it was recognized as an official party by Elections Ontario, he appeared on the ballot as an independent.[18] He finished a distant fourth against Liberal candidate Rick Bartolucci in Sudbury. Scott was still listed as president of the Ontario Options Party in December 2000, when he wrote a letter opposing the amalgamation of Greater Sudbury.[19]

Scott later affiliated with Paul Hellyer's Canadian Action Party at the federal level, and ran for the party in the 1997 federal election. He finished fifth against Liberal incumbent Ray Bonin in Nickel Belt. Scott was chairman of the Canadian Action Party's northern caucus in the 2000 federal election. He said that the party's main goal was "to protect Canada from the growing Americanization of our nation".[20]

Shortly before the 2003 provincial election, Scott wrote a public letter calling on all former New Democrats to return to the party. He wrote that the Rae government had "largely ignored [its promises] about public auto insurance and other social issues", but also argued that the party had moved on since then, and described Rae's successor Howard Hampton as "reasoned, honest [and] intelligent".[21]


Scott played a significant role in organizing a symposium on John F. Kennedy in Sudbury in 1993.[22] He helped organize Health Awareness Week in 2000, to support Canada's health-care system and educate at-risk groups about disease concerns.[23]

Shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks, he wrote a letter to the Sudbury Star criticizing the paper for running an editorial cartoon that he described as "sick, prejudiced, racist [and] unfeeling". In the same letter, he supported the rights of the Palestinian people.[24]


  1. ^ "Donald W. Scott Obituary". The Sudbury Star. December 2014. Retrieved 4 December 2014. 
  2. ^ Rob O'Flanagan, "Groups work to preserve medicare", '"Sudbury Star, 9 May 2000, A3; Rob O'Flanagan, "Don Scott a tireless medical researcher", Sudbury Star, 7 May 2001, A2.
  3. ^ "York North CCF picks candidate", Toronto Star, 16 July 1953, 14; Harold Carmichael, "The answer is out there", Sudbury Star, 6 April 2004, B6.
  4. ^ Don Scott, "A veteran goes back to war", Toronto Star, 4 May 1997, F6; Don Scott, "An arranged marriage, military style: The name has been changed to protect the guilty", Sudbury Star, 16 July 2004, A11; Don Scott, "The Christening of Stoker Small's new son", Sudbury Star, 23 July 2004, A9.
  5. ^ "Smith, Cathers, Scott Seek York North", 23 July 1953, A5.
  6. ^ "OSSTF illegally calculates staff pension, teacher says", Globe and Mail, 16 October 1979, P20.
  7. ^ John Allemang, "Retirement planning with a twist", Globe and Mail, 10 November 1984, H10.
  8. ^ Don Scott, "Taking on 'Mighty Myke' and its mysteries", Sudbury Star, 30 July 2004, A9.
  9. ^ Harold Carmichael, "The answer is out there", Sudbury Star, 6 April 2004, B6.
  10. ^ Don Scott, "Some health myths don't deserve to endure: Maybe people feeling ill really are ill", '"Sudbury Star, 13 August 2004, A11.
  11. ^ "Scott launches publication", Sudbury Star, 20 July 1999, A3; Terry Pender, "Journal looks at theory behind cause of diseases", Sudbury Star, 25 July 1999, A3.
  12. ^ "New magazine launches", Sudbury Star, 5 November 2001, A2.
  13. ^ Rob O'Flanagan, "Don Scott a tireless medical researcher", Sudbury Star, 7 May 2001, A2.
  14. ^ Rosalind Waples, "Residents blame jets for illness", Sudbury Star, 13 August 1999, A1.
  15. ^ Rob O'Flanagan, "MS patients eager to take trial", Sudbury Star, 29 July 2005, A4.
  16. ^ Rob O'Flanagan, "Don Scott a tireless medical researcher", Sudbury Star, 7 May 2001, A2.
  17. ^ "York North CCF picks candidate", Toronto Star, 16 July 1953, 14.
  18. ^ Don Scott, "Ontario NDP need support of members" [letter], Sudbury Star, 22 October 2003, A9; "New one-man party wants a 5-way split", The Gazette, 11 June 1994, A9. See also Valerie Lawton, "Fringe parties fight for attention in campaign", Kingston Whig-Standard, 12 May 1995, 13.
  19. ^ Donald W. Scott, "Restructuring cost city some leaders" [letter], Sudbury Star, 15 December 2000, A7.
  20. ^ Chris Polehoykie, "Federal election races beginning to take shape", Sudbury Star, 26 October 2000, A3.
  21. ^ Don Scott, "Ontario NDP need support of members" [letter], Sudbury Star, 22 October 2003, A9.
  22. ^ Doug Fischer, "Canadians obsessed with puzzle of Kennedy killing", Vancouver Sun, 20 November 1993, B2; Harold Carmichael, "The answer is out there", Sudbury Star, 6 April 2004, B6.
  23. ^ Rob O'Flanagan, "Groups work to preserve medicare", '"Sudbury Star, 9 May 2000, A3.
  24. ^ Don Scott, "Political cartoon on terrorism offends" [letter], Sudbury Star, 20 September 2001, A7.